tv [untitled] March 29, 2012 3:30pm-4:00pm EDT
resource on these key her issues. health and economic rights of women that are at stake in this election. we want to hear what you're com obstacles you're finding when it comes to your right to vote and how we can be a larger coalition as we move forward in the 2012 elections. if you'll introduce yourself, if you're with an organization, and where you're from, and then if you want to direct your question to any of the specific panelists we'll take them now. >> my name is wendy wolf and i fabulous.hank you for what i have one very fundamental question. i heard that in terms of the policy issues that moms rising cares about, reproductive rights and birth control are not one of them. and it seems to me that every mom and every future mom in this country really wants to determine whether and when they have children. and that the vast majority of
americans and voters are in favor of birth control. and so i was wondering if it's true, is there a possibility that you could survey your members and find in fact thisec for economic security? >> i'm delighted to report that is a mythyth that you can google me right now and i wrote a big article. i can't remember what it was called. sex, motherhood, and politics, on huffington post. the fact of the matter is that 99% of american women have used birth control at some point in their lives. 98% of catholic women have used birth control at some point in their lives. mothers use birth control, you know, it's very important to note that the average facmily size is under two children per family. it is important and hooks right into economic justice which i know you all know about but it costs over $200,000 to raise one child to age 18, not even including college. and until we get family economic security policies, people are
struggling to support the children that they now have with a quarter of families with young children living in poverty. so i completely agree with you that having access to both when to have children and how many is critical to the economic empowerment of all women and mothers. >> i guess that settles that. >> we'll rotate microphones. my name is karen teagarden and i am with unite against the war on women and first aid like to thank linda and ter oin the panel for supporting for supporting what we are doing. my question is for everybody in this room. who is going to join us against this war on women's rights on april 28th in every single state in this country and d.c.? if you don't know about it there are flyers on every table. and we really thank you for your support. if you have any questions you can go to our website unite women.org.
thank you. >> thank you very much. i know it is happening all over the country. unite women.org. it is to unite women against the war on women. marches and rallies, april 24th -- 28th. i'm sorry. i have 24 in my brain. okay. april 28th. >> hi. i'm a people person. i represent people. that's all. i want to know, having been in this business since right after world war ii, being 90, i just would like to know from you, where is the american medical association? where are the obstetricians? where the pediatricians? where are our husbands? okay? >> terry please? >> i can't tell you how many
e-mails and phone calls and tweets that i received from men about the importance of birth control. one of the phone messages i had was, you know, this man said, i want to thank you so much what n.o.w. is doing to protect women's access to birth control. he said it's not just about my wife and my daughters. it's about our whole family finances. if we didn't have access to birth control, you know, we wouldn't be where we are today. really, what is extremely good news is that the men are with us and i think that is demonstrated by the afl-cio's statement about birth control. >> there is something else, too. the ama, i hate to tell you all, but the ama only has a small amount of physicians as their members today. you know, they have a very large presence and thought in lobbying but their members have been going down for many, many years
where a lot of the importance is on the state and the grass roots areas in the medical professions. again, we need to talk to men of good conscience. that's what i call them. there are some of them in this room right now. but it's the men of good conscience. we need to say to men and not be worried about saying it that they need to speak up for reproductive rights. it's a health issue, a family issue. thank you. >> i want to say that 20% of our volunteers throughout the country are men. terrific. 20% volunteers. >> i'm isabella and i am 14. i wanted to ask the panel. a lot of the issues you're talking about if not affecting the younger generation now will in the future. i know that the younger generations do care about a lot of thesish but don't feel like
their voice really matters because they cannot vote. how do you propose the younger generations can get involved to help with the cause? thank you. >> use your votes. use your voice on community forums. you can use your voice now. you can speak up now. you can blog now. you can facebook now. you can make your voices very much heard. you may not be able to go into the voting booth though you can if you go to the newseum and go to the every four years exhibit. you can vote there just last week weerks also had a youth summit led by a high school student from school without walls and this past saturday we had about 30 young women, young girls, middle school, high school age who actually really focused us on the fact that what they need for us to do is to remember to vote for them and they also laid out the issues they were concerned
about. they're concerned about their futures and so engaging young women and young girls together around the issues they're concerned about. and so they're looking and worried about what's going to happen with this election and so i have a very fresh understanding about what girls are thinking about from that youth summit. and they're concerned about whether they'll be able to go to school. they're concerned about the community, concerned about health and wealth and the fact that their parents don't have the jobs they need. and so the whole point is you have to vote for us and also be able to engage the young girls in listening to what they had to say, and young boys as we know in the african-american community behind what is going on. i mentioned trayvon because there go i. i mean, i had my hoody on last saturday. we all went out there with the young people. i am, we are, any of us could be trayvon. and what is going on with the mother and father both.
engaging, we all as adults have to make sure you feel what we're doing is all about you. i say get their issues. make sure we get that part of what we're doing. >> i will add to these comments. the wonderful thing about college age especially, just getting to vote for the first time many of them in the upcoming elections, they are so outraged about what is happening. and everywhere, as you know the feminist majority foundation has a very large, over 600 campus network, feminist majority leadership alliances and affiliated groups, having a big conference this weekend following today and tomorrow. we have almost 500 collegiate leaders from all over the country coming together to
self-organize in a massive get out her vote campaign for this next election. so do not marry. do not worry about young people. we have them. we just need to help get the resources together so that they can overcome the especially severe voter repression measures that are targeted at young people. just take two questions. >> i just want to remind everybody to answer the question about where the american medical association is. the american college of gynecology actually does support us. there are gynecologists and obstetricians out there who are on our side even if the ama is not. so sorry to interrupt but i wanted to get that out there. >> thank you. we'll take two more questions. >> my name is andrea rankin. i'm from a small town in central new york. in 1984, the choice group organized a coalition of women's groups with the idea that the perception of power is power.
so every year since '84 we've polled candidates running for office on their opinions on women's issues. and of late, we are not getting any responses and they're refusing to fill that out. then i also learned that project vote smart, democrat and republicans are telling candidates not to fill out candidates surveys. so it forces us to do a hell of a lot of research to find their positions and also to look eyeball to eyeball and confront candidates. but critical that you do that research and get the word out on where candidates stand on these issues. we've got to know. and women have to know to vote as they go in that day who is going to stand up for women's rights. >> and also be sure to get -- we put on the tables the congressional voting record. please take those with you. don't put them and just throw them away. inside there is a poster that
you can actually take out and put up in your communities and use this for, you know, it's my vote. i will be heard. but it says -- it has everybody's congressional voting record. this is how at least you know how the candidates are standing. so take it with you. give it to your families, your friends. it doesn't matter how old you are. put the poster up. okay? thank you. >> good. thank you for supplying that for everybody today. >> now go to the n.o.w. pact.org and you'll see the candidates that have been endorsed by n.o.w. pact, unequivocal and very vocal supporters of women's issues. i have this wonderful fantasy and i don't know where we'll find the resources for it. i really think that whoever is the nominee for the presidency needs to be asked repeatedly and often to sign a pledge for birth control. right? we know that rick santorum signed the personhood pledge
where he promised to work to pass laws that would declare that life begins at fertilization and so whoever the candidate is, we want that candidate to sign a -- mitt romney by the way refused to sign the personhood pledge but he has not signed a birth control pledge so let's let him sign a birth control pledge, a violence against women pledge, a medicare pledge, a medicaid pledge. we got a lot of pledges. i think that what we should do is just follow him around and get him to either sign the pledge or say why they won't. >> you have the last question. >> i'm from cleveland, ohio. i want to say i was so pleased to see the 70% pins because i think this visual reminder to people and i am here to happily announce in ohio this year we have seven women running for
congress. that i think is amazing. these seven women would be part of turning around the key battleground state from being red to blue and also adding so many more women to the congress. thank you. >> thank you. thank you, lana. i'm going to have to move right into this next plenary. we're going to also take questions and answers at the end of this one. if you had a burning question hold on to it. you're going to get a chance to ask. i'll ask first of all -- i want to thank all of you for joining us today. and for being set to a key part of the her votes coalition. together we are going to mobilize an unprecedented turning out of women in the november election. so thanks to all of you. if i could ask the next panel to approach the state so we can keep on scheduled we are still
if anyone has seen deverne gains, she is probably in the hallway. can you go get her? yeah. we want you to stay with us. we want our c-span audience to . this next forum is coming to a state near you. round up of valid initiative and voter suppression efforts. you have heard a little bit today already about some of the so-called personhood initiatives that are going to be on state ballots. we have some of the leading experts to tell awe you a little bit more about where those are happening and the impact those can have. you are also going to hear about
the drive for equal marriage both in states where we're expecting anti-equal marriage it on the ballot as well as literally a couple states where we're putting our initiatives on the ballot to win back equal marriage. then you're also going to hear about the ongoing fight for workers' rights, some very critical elections in this country revolving around winning back the rights that have been so terribly compromised under these extreme, conservative state legislatures and governors that came out of the 2010 elections. we're never going to let that happen again. so i am going to introduce the moderator for this next panel. deverne gaines is the
coordinator of our choices campus leadership program. also an attorney who works with our national clinic violence project to stop the anti-abortion extremist attacks on clinics all across the country. so please welcome deverne gaines and hold your questions to the end. we'll have more time for q & a. >> hello. welcome. on to the next plenary session. thank you for sticking it out with us. yes, we are indeed right now talking about ballot measures and stopping the war on women and what's on deck in 2012 with respect to these measures. ballot measures presents an interesting opportunity for us. they're used by our opponents to create division and we capitalize upon that to unite our movement and fight back and win. there's a lot going on. we have a distinguished panel here to talk about anti-union
initiatives, anti-choice and personhood initiatives, i'm going to briefly speak about voter identification measures and amendments that have been passed in addition to anti-marriage equality and anti-lgbt initiatives across the country. we are -- it's been an interesting last two years with respect to voter identification, which is i think a good way to perhaps kick off this plenary session. last fall i was in mississippi working side by side with megan darby and planned parenthood and the aclu. we the feminist majority foundation were very active on college campuses throughout the state working to defeat initiative 26. that was thet to the ballot in mississippi. yes, that was a huge victory. al megan's thunder because actually
i will boast a little bit about what happened in that particular battle and the incredible effort that planned parenthood and the aclu and other groups, especially planned parenthood, put into that victory coupled with our work on the college campuses. we were 31 points behind two months out before the election. 31 points. we literally, i know planned parenthood put up offices, campaign offices overnight. i mean, threw them up. it was literally astonishing. and the incredible grass roots movement that took place in that state, i think it was something like, oh, thousands and thousands of phone calls that were made. over 412,000 phone calls made within a four-week period. 20,000 doors were knocked on. mississippians said no we're not stupid. we know this is masogoneous and are not going to change our
constitution with this crazy personhood initiative and we defeated the measure by ten points in the end. i'd like a little round of applause there. thank you. it was a tremendous effort. but unfortunately, we lost when it came to voter identification measure that was on the same ballot. and voter identification measures are out to disenfranchise millions of americans. and we saw a massive proliferation in 2011 of voter identification measures nationwide. i think over 34 measures were introduced across in state legislatures across the country in 2011. and there's at least 32 that have been introduced in 2011. and many of them have passed. and it's interesting that states like texas it's passed, wisconsin, south carolina and many of these states are subject to preclearance under the voting rights act, because of bad behavior in the past in terms of discrimination. so they're actually subject to
preclearance by the u.s. department of justice. and guess what, they're not getting it, because we know that these are racist, sexist laws. they're designed to disenfranchise voters. how are they designed to disenfranchise voters? if you're required to get a state-issued voter identification, like a driver's license, if you're elderly, if you're over 75. most individuals do not have photo identification anymore. especially driver's licenses. if you are a student, you won't have the same address as your voter identification, as your driver's license, use you're moving constantly from one year to the next. a new dorm, out of state. in addition, if you are a person of color, many places we're seeing what i would call polling location racial profiling. you're only asked for identification if you're a person of color. so it's sort of a selective bias and disenfranchisement that way. not to mention the fact, what we
see in certain areas, there are people of color who are less likely to have photo identification -- photo ids compared to their white counterparts. or disabled individuals. individuals who can't go down to the dmv at the drop of a hat to get the new strict photo id that is now required in their state. so i think it was best said that voter fraud is about as common place as being struck by lightning. so this is a complete ruse. and we must fight back and make sure we all have the opportunity to vote and we will. and i'm happy to say, wisconsin just -- their photo identification law was just found unconstitutional. as i said, much of this is being enjoined in the courts or department of justice is saying, uh-uh, we know what you're doing, we know this is essentially a poll tax or another method of discriminating
against segments of the population. so hopefully we will win and make sure everybody gets to that ballot box this november. and in the primaries this spring. and i just wanted to briefly talk about that. before i go on to introduce -- and i think i'll start with megan, because i mentioned mississippi. and she is here to talk to us about a little bit about what they did there. i think megan, you were the deputy director of the mississippians for healthy families campaign, which was the main statewide campaign to defeat initiative 26. we, the feminist majority foundation, worked with students across the state through the students voting no on 26 campaign. and megan is currently the -- i should get this correct, because i know it's a mouthful, so i want to make sure i have it correct.
ballot initiative and opposition research manager at planned parenthood federation. she has worked all over the country, understand, on ballot measures, including prior life with afscme, working to defeat anti union initiatives. and please welcome to the stage now, megan darby. >> hello. thanks for having me.
at the elder state offices. and the man who is now the governor was a huge supporter of person hood. so what we really did, and would they're thankful for all of you helped us to do, was we created a climate where people could talk about this, and where people had doubts and where people were given permission to be pro life. because they are in the state of mississippi. and be against personhood. so i think we were the least voted on, because we did create a culture of doubt that some people weren't comfortable voting no. but they definitely weren't comfortable voting this into law. and i'm happy to report that they did try a couple maneuvers in the state legislature this year to try to get personhood back up and running and it has been defeated. so we will not see personhood of mississippi for at least a couple more years. so let me transition into what we definitely will be seeing.
and i'm going to start out in the state of north dakota. on the june primary, june 12th, there will be a religious liberties ballot initiative. it's a very broad, wide-based initiative that will legally make it the that you can discriminate based on your religion. it can go as far as birth control refusal or denying a muslim couple to rent an apartment that you are the landlord. this is a primary that people will be voting in, because there is an open senate seat. so that's the first one. and obviously, our organization and everybody in this room does not want discrimination, and especially with the refusal fight that we're still going through, actually. this is something that we will be watching. now, moving on to florida, there is a privacy and funding ban. this was placed by the florida legislature last year. and what this basically does is public funding is -- it will deny public funding for abortion. we don't know, we're still
exploring what this really means. but this also could impact public employees' private insurance, because technically it's paid for by public funds. so it could take away abortion care from private insurance people that are employed by the state. and also, there is a little provision written in. the florida privacy and their constitution is actually stronger than the united states constitution. so they will would like to repeal it to the united states standard. now, what does this mean? because honestly, the first time i looked at it, i was like, what? we stop a lot of things because of the strong privacy laws in florida. so we're repe-- repealing it wo open the door for things that might not necessarily get very far because of the protection in their constitution. so this will be happening in november. and another thing that will be happening in november, in montana is parental notification. now, this was a -- again, put in by the state legislature so we
only have one citizen-driven initiative on the ballot now out of the three. montana last year, the state legislature passed a parental innovation bill and sent it to the governor, who is 100% pro choice. and they said, this is what we're going to do. if it you veto this, we have passed something else that will throw a constitutional amendment on the ballot next year. so you either sign this or we fight at the ballot box. so he vetoed. and now we have parental notification in montana. so those are the three that are definitely going to be printed on the ballot. here's what we think is probably likely in november. i'm sure you've heard, personhood it back in the colorado. as you know, 2008, it was defeated overwhelmingly. and in 2010, they gained three points. still, defeated overwhelmingly. after the victory, aith keith